I hope you are all well and sane as we continue with our isolation. I am trying to appreciate how lucky I am during these difficult times. My isolation is within the confines of a comfortable house with a wife who has yet to express the desire to murder me. I have lots to keep me busy, including getting back on my schedule of weekly blogs and I live in a lovely New Hampshire village with opportunities to walk around the neighborhood and along the woodland trails of our local forests.
I hope you are all getting out to enjoy the warming spring weather. Last week I discussed the photographic opportunities outside in the New England early spring “stick season”, but an exciting part of spring is that the attractions keep changing and getting better. It’s not just sticks anymore. Next up for the spring hit parade is the bud season.
Given the relatively short growing season, as soon as conditions allow, our outdoor greenery tends to explode from its winter dormancy. Right now, we can catch everything from swelling buds to early spring flowers all combined with the remnants of last year’s growth.
This time of year, it is all about shooting close, but you don’t need special equipment to photograph the varied signs of early spring. You can capture great shots with a simple point & shoot camera or even your smart phone.
|iPhone 7 of Rhododendron|
|24-100mm with Extension Tube|
for a nice discussion about extension tubes
The key to striking spring macro images is to find the fresh buds in good light and at a time when the wind is not strong. Depth of field is often a challenge with macro photography. The ability to stop down to small apertures may be limited when the subjects are blowing in the breeze and long exposure only produce an artistic blur. Higher ISO levels can allow shorter exposures but at the cost of image quality and noise. It usually becomes a matter of compromise to find the best solution. Focus stacking is another option but blending the images can also be challenging when the subject is being blown about. When a subject cannot be fully in focus, the challenge is to pick the critical portions to bring into sharpness. It is remarkable how much soft focus the eye can forgive as long as areas of sharpness draw attention to key elements.
More to Come
|Folded Ferns / Mid May|
Jeff Newcomer, NEPG